DEADLINE EXTENDED! NOW MONDAY 10/25 at 11:59 PM. All ideas are welcome, entering is easy, and all completed entries will be awarded a FREE T-Shirt!

LaunchPad Ideas Competition

Do you see a problem? Do you have an idea that might make things better? We invite ALL UCF students to share their ideas, get feedback from experienced entrepreneurs, and start their entrepreneurial journeys by participating in the LaunchPad Ideas Competition! This inclusive event is designed to provide students with an opportunity to showcase their early-stage ideas and compete for cash prizes! Also, all students who submit complete applications will be offered a free UCF LaunchPad “Be the Spark that Ignites Change” T-shirt (while supplies last).

Big Idea Competition Logo

Event Details

Entering the competition is easy. Students need to complete a 2-3 page application that asks them to describe:

  • a problem they care about,
  • an idea for a solution that makes things better,
  • users/customers who would benefit,
  • how they might earn money necessary to offer your idea,
  • how big the idea could become (how many might benefit?),
  • why the participant should be the one to realize this idea, and 
  • supporting evidence that boosts the credibility of the proposal. 

Participants are invited to take advantage of free resources offered by our Blackstone LaunchPad to help them connect, learn, create, and succeed. Our expert coaches and speakers can help students refine their ideas, build essential skills, and win on their entrepreneurial journeys … including this competition!

This signature program supports our LaunchPad’s goals to reduce risk, broaden accessibility, and diversify engagement in entrepreneurship, especially for those who lack resources, role models, and mentors.  

The competition is completely virtual, hosted on our StartupTree platform. Here is how it works:

Have the winning idea in your track and win up to $1,000.

Ready to apply? Get started on StartupTree.

Choose Your Track

Our Idea Competition is actually four competitions in one, with each track being independently judged and offering $1000 to the winner ($4000 total prizes!). Thus, participants will need to select the track most closely associated with their idea: 

  • Social and Climate Impact: sustainability, education, human rights, poverty alleviation, racial and social justice
  • Health & Life Science: biotech/sciences, health & medical science, healthcare
  • Consumer Products & Services
  • General: ideas that do not fit clearly in the other tracks

Please email launchpad@ucf.edu for questions regarding which track best fits an idea. We reserve the right to reclassify entries we judge to fit better with another track.

Prizes

The winners of each track will earn $1,000. Furthermore, ALL FOUR campus-round winners will be automatically entered into a national competitions where they can win:

  • $10,000 in additional prize money to further develop their idea
  • Free expert consultating for brand and logo design, product strategy, and technology utilization
Eligibility

Students may participate in ONE idea competition submission and must:

  • be a current UCF student (undergrad or grad, any discipline) ​ 
  • be a founder/co-founder (i.e., the person with the original idea) 
  • be in the “ideation” stage of their entrepreneurial journey (registered businesses and startups with over $1000 in revenue are NOT eligible, but strongly encouraged to meet with LaunchPad coaches, connect with other free startup resources and participate in our $50K Joust New Venture Competition in Spring ’22) 
  • create a profile on Startuptree and apply as an individual or a partnership (max of two students per entry)

Important Dates

  • September 27th: LaunchPad Idea Competition Application opens
  • October 25th: Application deadline (by 11:59PM)
  • October 25th to November 15th: Competition judging (virtual) 
  • Week of November 15th – 19th: UCF Track winners announced, and winners invited to join the Blackstone LaunchPad Network national finalist round
  • December 1st: Deadline to participate in Blackstone LaunchPad Network national finalist round (staff at the UCF Blackstone LaunchPad will contact our track winners and provide competition details)